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  • Board of Trustees

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Legal, Compliance & Risk Management


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Adjunct Faculty

BOT 4.3.0

Policy Statement

4.3.0 Adjunct Faculty

Adjunct Faculty are any Faculty appointed to full time or part time positions created for purposes such as working on grants or contracts, filling in for Regular Faculty who may be absent, completing specific projects, augmenting the Regular Faculty, teaching a single semester's course offering, enhancing the programs of the university with distinguished Visiting persons, and for other purposes. Adjunct Faculty include visiting faculty, affiliate faculty, and part-time instructors (at any rank) as defined below. Adjunct Faculty are not eligible for nor do they accrue any credit toward academic tenure. There are no employment rights beyond the appointment terms stated below. Each appointing unit shall be responsible for carrying out an annual evaluation of Adjunct Faculty for the purpose of contract renewal.

4.3.1 Appointments. All Adjunct Faculty appointments shall be for specific but renewable periods of time and shall be subject to and limited to the conditions, benefits, and obligations herein outlined. All adjunct appointments are subject to regular evaluation.

A. Senior Affiliate Faculty: After seven (7) consecutive years at the University as an Affiliate Faculty member, an individual is eligible to apply to be appointed to Senior Affiliate subject to the conditions and process as established by the Provost.

B. Affiliate Faculty: Affiliate Faculty serve in a specialized role such as a clinical coordinator, field supervisor, or may be selected to teach a limited range of courses. Those individuals who are selected to teach full time on nine-month appointments normally maintain twenty-four (24) to thirty (30) credit hours per year. Those individuals selected to teach part time on nine-month appointments normally maintain six (6) to eleven (11) credit hours per semester. Such individuals are normally not terminally qualified in their respective discipline.

Affiliate faculty normally teach a limited range of courses and are not expected to participate in curriculum development, university service, or scholarly activity (beyond staying current in their fields) as a condition of employment. 

Initially, upon hire, individuals will be appointed for one academic year, or fiscal year if appropriate, on a full time or part time basis. This may be renewed once for an additional academic or fiscal year. Thereafter, such individuals may be appointed for three (3) consecutive academic or fiscal years. Employment contracts are renewable. If no notification of renewal is given by May 1 of the second year of the contract, it will not be renewed. Appointment exceptions must be approved in advance by the Provost. The terms and conditions of appointment will be covered in the employment contract.

C. Visiting Faculty: Appointments will be made on full time or part time basis for one (1) academic or fiscal year. Such appointments are normally not renewable beyond three (3) one-year appointments.

D. Senior Part-Time Instructor: Part-Time Instructors who have taught for Grand Valley for a minimum of a five-year time span including within that time at least eight semesters of teaching and there is a continuing need, are eligible for appointment as Senior Part-Time Instructor. Senior Part-Time Instructors may be appointed to one-year contracts when a Unit Head determines there is a sufficient demand for the courses offered.

E. Part-Time Instructor: Appointments to teach one or more classes for a single academic semester.

The university may terminate any Adjunct Faculty appointment at any time, upon 7 calendar days written notice, for the following reasons:

  1. Financial reasons as determined by the Office of the Provost.
  2. Course and/or program elimination.
  3. Committing an act of professional incompetence, moral turpitude, neglect of professional responsibilities, or conviction of a felony.
  4. Failure to follow instructions and directions of the unit head and/or appointing officer.
  5. Violation of university Policies and Procedures.